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Concord Academy

College Transfer Information

Transfer Admissions

The College Counseling Office recommends a student carefully consider the resources at his or her present college before pursuing a transfer admissions process.  Often, your present institution will allow you to achieve your academic goals through independent study or access to graduate courses in order to accommodate your needs.  However, if you are truly unhappy, here are some considerations when undertaking the transfer process:

The process for transfer students is quite similar to that of the high school applicant, with some slight modifications.  Begin the transfer process by thinking about your wants and needs.  And although predicting selectivity is difficult – colleges decide how many transfers to admit year-by-year based on that year’s retention rate – we assume that because transfer students are not profiled at most colleges/ universities, transfer applicants are generally not evaluated with the same rigorous objective standards as first-year students.  Additionally, the transfer application calendar varies from school to school – be sure to check each individual school’s deadlines and notification dates.

Simply thinking about transferring, even if you never act on it, forces you to take stock of where you are, talk informally to a few professors and maybe a dean, and perhaps set some goals for yourself.  The transfer process is also healthy in that its steps are simultaneously the steps that help students to adjust better to their current college – with one caveat: that you don't make your desire too public.  And by that we mean roommate(s), hallmates, and the like.  As soon as you tell people that you are considering a transfer, some will keep you at an arm's length.

What To Do…

  1. Meet with your favorite professor(s) a few times and talk to a dean.  The adults are key because they not only have seen students thinking about these same questions, but from a strategic admissions perspective, they write letters for you, and probably don't know you all that well.  Even if it is a favorite teaching assistant, get to know them.  Share a coffee with them.  Tell them who you are.

  2. Get involved in a new activity.  Not only does it give you another dimension of thinking about your college, but it also gives the transfer admissions committee the confidence that you are involved and that you have given the college a shot.  You may also meet some new people.

  3. Get good grades.  A no-brainer, but the most important element on a transfer application.

  4. Explore and choose courses that are more general in nature.  Not only will this expose you to a broader academic world, but also it may allow you more flexibility if you do transfer.  You don't want to lose too many credits when transferring (even if you have a few AP credits to waste).

  5. Consider the questions on the reverse side of this sheet.

  6. Trust your gut.

Questions Unique to the Transfer Applicant

Review your original criteria for colleges and call each of the colleges that you believe meet your criteria.  Ask if you can speak to someone who evaluates transfer applications.  Write down this person's name as your contact source and call him/her for all future inquiries.  It is important to ask the following questions and review the answers to determine how to proceed in your college course work in order to enhance your transfer application.

  • What is the percentage of transfer students accepted as sophomores for the last two years?  Percentage projection for the year you plan to apply?

  • What is the percentage of transfer students accepted as juniors for the last two years?  Percentage projection for the year you plan to apply?

  • What was the average college GPA and SAT I score accepted in the last two years?

  • How much weight is given to an applicant's secondary school record in the evaluation process?  It is usually less if you are applying for junior status.

  • How much weight is given to an applicant's SAT scores in the evaluation process?  (Again, it is usually less if you are applying for junior status.)

  • What are the required courses the admissions office is looking for transfer applicants to have completed by the close of their first year?  Usually, colleges will evaluate transfer students more favorably if they have taken some of the basic requirement courses towards their major.  This may not hold true for students attending a focused program (e.g. conservatory); they may be evaluated differently due to the courses and opportunities available.

  • Does financial aid play a role in the transfer admissions decision?

  • What was the percentage of aid given to accepted transfer students last year?  What was the average grant for transfer students?

  • Does the college have a separate financial aid budget for transfer students?  Does this budget fluctuate each year?  How much?

  • Is an interview required of transfer applicants?  If so, are they offered on campus?  What is the deadline for the interview?

  • Is housing provided for the transfer student?

  • What kinds of services are available for new transfer students (orientation)?  How does the school facilitate your enrollment, academic advising, registration, housing, etc.?

  • Are there restrictions on your curriculum choices?  Is study abroad an issue?